Discussing fees can be a hurdle for many accountants and bookkeepers. Setting the right pricing isn’t just about determining a number, it’s about knowing your worth and valuing your services correctly. Ready to ensure business growth and build trust with your clients? Here are our top tips for implementing a pricing strategy confidently.
1. Recognise and communicate your worth
Small business owners can often feel uncertain about accounting and would rather run their business than spend much time on paperwork. That’s why your service is really beneficial to them: you can offer peace of mind on the numbers and save them significant time. As an advisor, you can also get to know what matters to them and offer additional support on achieving their wider goals. The more your clients understand your value, the more likely they are to pay for your services.
2. Embrace positive pricing options
Clients are increasingly looking for accountants who do more than just glance at historical data - and that should be reflected in a confident pricing model. A forward-thinking accountant doesn’t just have a focus on compliance, they are a valuable asset who takes lessons from the previous year’s balance sheet, forecasts future trajectories and offers solutions for more efficient workflows.
With this in mind, it can be beneficial to adopt tiered pricing models, such as bronze, silver or gold packages. This approach doesn’t list prices for separate services; instead, it asks clients, "How comprehensively would you like our assistance?" A clearly defined pricing structure can prevent potential clients asking for a cheaper quote.
It’s only natural to worry about charging too much or too little, but it’s important to learn as you go. If you review your offer over time, while keeping track of services and the growth of your client’s businesses, you should be able to estimate pricing with greater confidence.
3. Get to know your client
You shouldn’t rush to quote a price without a good understanding of your client and their business. Not every client is a good fit, and understanding this is vital for your practice. Before setting a fee, it can be beneficial to have a chat to prioritise the business owner’s aspirations. It’s no longer about producing a tax return, it’s about helping them to fulfil their ambitions. Do they want to retire soon? Or do they want their business to grow within a certain time? Diving into this information will show you really care about your client and they’ll be more likely to appreciate the value you add.
4. Differentiate yourself
When a potential new client comes to you, they’ll often be comparing you to another option. That’s why it’s important to get across what sets you apart from the competition. It’s worth taking the time to do some market research and find out what other practices are charging in your region. If you communicate that you have better technology (like FreeAgent accounting software!), better terms, more specialised knowledge, understand their needs or can demystify accounting for them, then they’ll be more likely to agree to your price. So consider asking them why they’re considering a switch, so you can communicate why your practice is the best choice.
Interested in more tips about pricing? Why not watch our recent CPD-accredited webinar on ‘Self Assessment: finding the right pricing strategy’.